Welcome to our Google Analytics Guide for Indy Businesses. Google Analytics is a free, effective tool to understand more about your audience and how they interact with your website.
This guide is to help Indy businesses gain a fundamental knowledge of Google Analytics and how you can use it to understand your audience better and get a leg-up over your competition.
Table of Contents
- Intro to Google Analytics
- Getting Started with Google Analytics
Introduction to Google Analytics
So, what is Google Analytics? Google Analytics is a free online software by Google that enables you to track, understand, and segment your audience.
We’ve used it to build buyer personas for clients, build remarketing lists, check site visitors counts, understand the demographics of our clients’ customers and so much more.
Every digital marketer or agency that’s worth their salt should know their Google Analytics and how to use it effectively.
To get started, go here and sign in using the Gmail you want to use to track your websites. Once you log in, you will be directed to the set-up page.
Name your account something that will contain all your projects or the name of your business. We would recommend checking off all the optional offerings by Google and select “Web” on the next page.
You should now be at the Google Analytics dashboard.
Now you’ll want to install the Google Analytics tag on your website. To do that, click the gear on the bottom right-hand corner of the screen, then go to “Tracking Info” under the property section.
Once there, click “Tracking Code.” You will then see the Global Site Tag that you will need to install on your website. There are two ways to do this. You can either:
- Copy and paste the code into the header of your website on all pages you want to track. If you’re using WordPress I recommend using the plugin “insert headers and footers” to easily install it globally on your site.
- Set up Google Tag Manager and install it from there.
After you have the code installed you’re ready to go! To test and see if it works go to your website while having Analytics open. You should be able to click the “real-time” tab on the left of Analytics and see at least 1 user.
Getting Started With Google Analytics
You should now have Google Analytics properly installed and ready to go. Sweet!
It’s time to get familiar with what it’s capable of and how you will want to use it as a beginner. Let’s go over the different features of the menu.
Think of the “audience” tab as the part of Analytics that will tell you more about the features and characteristics of your audience. It will break down who they who and what they’re like.
This is where you get to see how many people are visiting your site, how long they stay, and average bounce rates. As marketers, we use these metrics to understand more about your site performance and how to look for improvement opportunities.
You can also view the demographics, location, operating system, type of mobile device, or even language of your traffic from the overview tab.
Think of the “acquisition” tab as Google showing you how you got the visitors you did. This part of the tool gives you insights into the varying funnels and mediums you need to understand your customers better.
Just like the audience tab, the “Overview” section of Acquisition is the general dashboard showing you what’s going on.
To get a better understanding of where your visitors are coming from, use the “referrals” tab. It gives you an in-depth analysis of where your visitors came from. If you need more help with the terminology of Google Analytics, take a look at this guide.
The “Behavior” tab is basically giving you a breakdown of what people are doing once they’re on your website. Now that you know who they are and how they got here, it’s time to figure out more about what they’re doing.
By now you should be seeing a common trend among the Overview tab. It’s giving you a basic breakdown of what people are doing on your website.
We always take note of the page section to see what pages our visitors are going to. If you want a more in-depth analysis of your landing pages go to Behavior –> Site Content –> Landing Pages.
Site Content – Landing Pages
If you aren’t familiar with the term, landing pages are just the first pages a visitor “lands” on when they visit your website.
That’s why it’s important to optimize your landing pages with effective copy, call-to-values, speed, and good design. If you need help with that we’ve got you covered.
Google Analytics likes to break things down by Acquisition, Behavior, and Conversions. Use this page to analyze your sessions and new users (Acquisition), bounce rate and average session duration (Behavior), and goal value (Conversions.)
Tip: The “/” represents your home page when viewing landing pages.
As one of the most convenient parts of Google Analytics, conversion tracking is a must-have for Indy businesses looking to track the performance of their marketing efforts.
A conversion is an important action taken on your site. For example, we typically set up a “Contact Me” conversion on all of our clients’ website after someone fills out a “contact me” form.
There are many, many types of conversions out there. Let’s get you started with a “contact me” conversion we we were talking about.
For WordPress users:
- Go to pages on WordPress and add a “thank-you” page. The slug should be (your website).com./thank-you
- Install Contact Form 7 and Contact Form 7 Redirection. Once you have them installed, go to WordPress and click on “Contact” on the left dashboard. Copy the code of the pre-existing form and paste it into a post, page or text widget where you want your visitors to contact you.
- Scroll over to the furthest right tab, “Redirect Settings.”
- Set the direct page to your thank-you page.
- Go to Google Analytics, click on “Admin” at the bottom left of the screen.
- Go to “View” and then “Goals.”
- Click “+NEW GOAL”
- Name it “Contact Me”, select “Destination”
- For Goal details, select “equals to” then (your website).com/thank-you then save.
Voila! You should have your first conversion set up. This should get you started in understanding your website visitors.
We hope you enjoyed our Google Analytics guide for Indy businesses! During tough times like this it’s critical for your business to be able to track your marketing efforts and if the changes you’re marketing to your site are effective.